Hey y’all! Hope you had a wonderful Father’s Day weekend. Did you make anything special over the weekend?
Now, sadly I’ve missed being with parents on both Mother’s and Father’s Day, but in honor of my father, I thought I’d make a pizza that was right up his gamey meat lovin’ alley. Now, I’ll be honest, this is basically the first time I’ve made my own pizza… since the age of 6. Yes, I did that whole little kid field trip/arts and crafts adventure into pizza making. You know the one where you keep that dough for long after your mother should have let you keep it. It was so fun to play with… well until it dry and creepy.
Here’s the truth, I live in New York City. Pizza here is top notch. Even the dollar pizza places are amazing. So as a (sort of) New Yorker (I’ve lived here for about 8 years- I’m kind of a New Yorker at this point right? Here’s a secret, I still have my Georgia ID so who knows what I technically am when weighing citizenship based on things besides taxes), why would you make your own pizza? I can buy it for less. After making this pizza, I’ve decided this thought process is wrong. And I was so very very dumb for believing this.
Actually, making your very own pizza is easy (as easy as pie). I will admit, I tried lots of recipes. I tweaked my recipe about 6 times before I found my ideal crust. I made the actual duck pizza about four times before I found the perfect ratio of duck to peach to herbs to cheese to duck fat sauce.
So I’m going to share with you the crust I enjoy most. It’s not too thin, not to thick and fluffy. It’s basically in the middle of both worlds. But really, if you like either crust on the spectrum, all you really have to do is play around with your yeast to flour ratio. The smaller amount of yeast the thinner the crust, the more amount of yeast the thicker/fluffier the crust.
I just want to discuss the duck and peach combo really fast. I know, some of you have some hesitations. Y’all think I’ve lost it. When I first told my boyfriend about this, he looked at me in befuddlement. He wasn’t completely keen on the peach and duck combo. Yes, I know it’s not what you’d typically think of. Just trust me it’s good! Think about it like this, oranges and duck go together. Why not peaches?
I highly recommend you make your pizza all in one day. Yes, you can refrigerate or freeze your crust, but most likely the crust will dry out enough that you won’t have the best of the best. Listen we all want the top notch, blue ribbon winning crust. Am I right? YES.
If you have make your crust before hand, or say you want to double the recipe so you’ve got somefor a rainy day. Make sure if you are putting the pizza dough into the fridge, you’ve wrapped it with a damp cloth and then saran wrapped the entire thing.
I recommend you cut off the fat from your duck breast. Throw half of that fat on to the skillet. You’ll get a little more grease to your duck, but you’ll also be able to use the leftover fat on the skillet for your sauce.
Remember when you cook the duck you’re going to want to cook it to just under medium rare. You don’t want to cook the duck too much. Remember it has to be finished in the oven with the pizza.
Once you get past the point of cooking your duck, it’s smooth sailing. All you’ve got left is the cheese.
Another detail I’d like to mention, the cheese I use is this great cheese called Oma Cheese. It’s a bit earthy. It’s got a medium heaviness to the taste. Not super stinky, but it’s not very delicate either. The texture is thick and buttery, like a very thick pudding. So spreading the cheese is a bit patchy. If you can get your hands on this cheese, I recommend you use it. Here’s some details about the cheese.
Now, if you can’t find this cheese in particular, you can really use any cheese you’d like (I recommend Ardrahan if it’s available). But if not, I typically go to the cheese counter at my local grocery and nose around a bit (lol). Sorry so corny! Anyways, you can always ask what might pair well with the duck, or go crazy and try a new cheese. Maybe something more like goat cheese or something more italian like a mozzarella. Go crazy! Go adventurous! What do you have to lose? It’s just cheese… right?
All that’s left to do is assemble your pizza. The pizza will be cooked in about 13 minutes. Like I said it’s as simple as pie. It’s a beautiful thing. And just for the record, it’s delicious!
SHREDDED DUCK AND PEACH PIZZA
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp instant yeast
1 cup warm water
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
4 peaches (halved or cut into thin slices)
5-8 oz Oma Cheese (or whatever your cheese preference may be
1 duck breast
1/2 duck fat from breast (toss in salt, pepper, and 1 tbsp of olive oil)
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
parsley and salt to garnish
1. In a small bowl combine sugar, warm water, vegetable oil, and yeast
2. In a large bowl sift flour and salt. Create well in the middle of the flour mixture and pour in yeast mixture. Stir yeast with your hand, gently pulling in flour into the yeast mixture.
3. Stir until combined. Dough should be fluffy and gummy. If the dough is sticky add flour. If the dough is too dry, add more water (1 tbsp at a time).
4. Once the dough is completely combined, form the dough into a ball. Line a bowl with olive oil. Place dough in the bowl and cover with a clean dish towel or Saran Wrap. Let rise for an hour. The dough should double in size.
5. Once the dough has risen, pre-heat oven to 400°F. Cut peaches in half or in small slices. Roast peaches for 10-15 minutes.
6. While peaches are in the oven, over medium heat cook duck breast for 4 minutes. Flip duck to other side, cook for 3 minutes. Make sure to cut off any duck fat from the breast. Cut the duck fat that you’ve removed from the breast into two. Cook half of the fat in skillet with duck. Once the duck is barely medium rare remove duck. Leave duck fat in skillet at low heat.
7. Using a knife, shred the duck. Alternatively, you could also cut the duck into thin diagonal strips.
8. Come back to your pizza dough, which has now risen. Punch the dough to let out the excess air. Roll the dough out to about 10 inches (or to desired size).
9. Preheat oven to 500° F. Spread cheese over dough, leave about 1/4 – 1/2 an inch on each side. Add duck and peaches to the top of your cheese. If you’d like, roll over edges of the dough into a thin crust
10. Cook pizza for 10-15 minutes, until crust is golden. If you are cooking your pizza on a pan it will take closer to 13 – 15 minutes depending on your oven. If you are cooking the pizza straight on your rack, it should only take 8 – 10 minutes.
11. While the pizza cooks. Turn up your stove top to medium heat. Add honey and balsamic vinegar to your duck fat. Cook for 5 minutes, occasionally stirring.
11. Once pizza is cooked, remove from oven. Sprinkle parsley and sea salt over pizza. Pour the honey, balsamic duck fat sauce over pizza. Cut and serve.
And now you’ve got yourself a delicious summer pizza treat. I’m really jealous.